Kang basically argued that if you’ve given white male directors a pass after making a mediocre film or two or three, be fair about it and cut DuVernay a little slack also.
Everybody drops the ball at one time or another, she basically said, and DuVernay, at least, screwed up because she took a chance, which is the best excuse or rationale for failure that you can offer. A “messy script with too many affirmational platitudes and not enough character development”? Okay, but also “wildly ambitious” and “intensely personal.”
“It’s important to note the ludicrously unfair burden that A Wrinkle in Time was saddled with as soon as DuVernay signed on,” Kang writes. “It had to be both artistically dazzling and a commercial hit in order for it to be considered any kind of success. Grossly put, the ‘system’ was rigged against it.
“A truly inclusive industry would give a pass to DuVernay as it has to so many white male directors (not that her career is now in any sort of trouble). Diversity that demands all people from marginalized groups never make a mistake is no diversity at all. It’s also annoying that advocates of diversity are forced once again into a defensive posture, making a case for one of our own, when the problem has always been the scarcity of opportunities, not the merits of inclusion.